Saturday, December 3, 2022

Joseph Benavidez Was Never Sold On Henry Cejudo’s UFC Flyweight Return

Joseph Benavidez claims he wasn’t convinced that Henry Cejudo would face him in a rematch at 125 pounds.

Benavidez will be getting another crack at the UFC flyweight championship, but it won’t be against “Triple C.” That’s because the former “champ-champ” has relinquished the 125-pound gold in favor of defending his bantamweight championship. Benavidez will share the Octagon with Deiveson Figueiredo at UFC Norfolk on Feb. 29.

Benavidez Had A Feeling Cejudo Would Ditch Flyweight‘s Damon Martin spoke to Benavidez, who said that Cejudo’s decision to stick with 135 pounds doesn’t surprise him.

“I don’t think he ever did,” Benavidez responded when asked if he believed Cejudo ever planned to return to flyweight. “I think we could have got him down for a crazy amount of money but that’s not the fight to make for a ton of money and you have to earn that, too, from his perspective.

“So I don’t really think he ever did [intend on coming back to flyweight]. For one, he would never say it publicly but also anyone that I knew personally that talked to him said ‘honestly, he’s not interested in going down again.’ I honestly never think he wanted to do it.”

Back in Dec. 2016, Benavidez took a split decision victory over Cejudo. While Benavidez seemed to be in limbo at flyweight due to his two losses to Demetrious Johnson, Cejudo earned a title shot after wins over Wilson Reis and Sergio Pettis. “Triple C” made the most of his opportunity, scoring a split decision victory over “Mighty Mouse.”

After starching T.J. Dillashaw in 32 seconds to retain his flyweight title, Cejudo went after bantamweight gold. He stopped Marlon Moraes to become a UFC “champ-champ.”